Loading up on fun…

Got my LOAD for Day 11 done, so that I can work uninterruptedly on a freeb for you, my sweeties!

But first, while I get my creative muse all warmed up, let’s sit and chat a while, why don’t we?

LOAD Day 11 & Daily December Day 7

Little Boys in the Big School

Journaling reads:

you were so excited to visit your big brother’s school. you proudly declared to everyone you met: “we’re the little brothers of A!”


Jessica’s fab Daily December template, Michelle Coleman’s Topper, Katie Pertiet’s Grid Brush PLUS Mindy Terasawa’s Groovy Boy Paper, Ribbon (recolored), Tab (recolored); Amber Clegg’s Postmarked Stamp (Explore); Sara Carling’s Aero Leather Tag & Pog

I now have 7 pages in my Daily December album (and to me, that’s an accomplishment, because note that it is now January… if not for the push that joining LOAD gave me, I would probably have completed my Daily December… uhhh… perhaps this coming December 2008. 😆 ) I’m hoping by the end of January I would’ve completed my Daily December album too! (Hey, dreaming is free! 😀 )

Playing Around with Photos

Remember a few posts ago (See Adventure: Word for the Month), I was talking about going for dinner at a restaurant with my hubby and our good friends Jun and Abby?

This was actually a delayed get-together for New Year’s, and a celebration of the completion of the article I wrote for a feature on Jun and Abby for a glossy magazine which features the who’s who in Asian society. It was the first time that Jun agreed to be featured at length in a magazine, and he had a whole set of conditions, one of which was that I do his write-up! Now how cool was that! 😉

On the other hand, it was extremely pressuring too–I mean, when someone believes in you that much, it’s scarier to slip on the tightrope, right? Even if you happened to slip because your foot was itchy, know what I mean? So anyway, the other thing that made it really difficult for me to complete the article (aside from my frustrating habit of self-editing) was the fact that the story of Jun and Abby is soooo rich, so wonderful to tell, so I had a really hard time trying to meet the 5000 character limit (and that was already increased from the original 4000).

But I was happy when I clicked SEND (roughly 24 hours after I had my eye surgery) and my article made its way to the mag editor’s inbox. I furnished a copy to Jun too. The very next morning, I received a basket of the most delicious rice cakes with coconut cream sauce, and a gold box filled with homemade polvoron (the best way I can describe this is milk-sugar powdery “cookies”)… and this note:


I have known Jun since I was 13 years old, and this is the first time I actually got a handwritten note from him. 😆

I must also qualify that I could never have written the article on my own: it was actually the product of a lot of prayer and divine grace. 🙂

So where does the subheading of this post “Playing Around with Photos” come in?

Well… I mentioned that hubby and I were a bit early for the dinner we were having with Jun & Abby, so we walked around, checking out the new mall… I wanted to take photos, but I had to settle for using my cellphone camera because I (kick self, kick self) foolishly resisted the urge to take Cameran along.

When I downloaded the photos, I was pretty shocked. Wait a minute, these aren’t too bad, considering I took them with a cellphone and with pure available light (which was actually not that available, as the skies were dark! 😆 )

Chateau 1771

This is the restaurant where we had dinner. The man on the right was using his cellphone for the right intention, while I was using mine to take photos. Crazy.

Chateau Take 2

We just opened this restaurant last December in the new mall (5th phase of a larger mall). One of the reasons Chateau is totally dear to our hearts is because when my hubby and I got married, we held our reception in the same restaurant (although it was in a different location then).

Since I already embarrassed my husband enough by taking photos >teeheehee< I decided to go all the way! I totally could not resist the play of lines and lights in the entire place!  Here’s more proof:

Don’t these lines remind you of the outline of a house?

I am totally tickled that this shot has been taken by a cellphone camera. C.E.L.L.P.H.O.N.E. camera. Amazing. I had no idea it would come out looking like this (so obvious that I haven’t been using the camera function on my cellphone, huh? 😆 )

The walkway that leads from the driveway and into the rest of the amazing complex (restaurant is on the left side of the photo) reminded me of the Getty Museum walkway with fountains. The long blocks in the middle are the beginnings of fountains (did I mention that the mall is new? So there’s still a lot that’s being done but it’s already looking awesome, even at this early stage).

The Walkway

More Photo Play

Over at 2peasinabucket, there’s a great photography course (free! couldn’t get better than that! 😀 ) given by Joanna Bolick, which promises 12 weeks to better photos. I thought it might be fun to try out their challenges. The one for this week involves using your camera in the Aperture priority mode (I loooove aperture priority mode: that’s the mode that I shoot in about 98% of the time. I only change when I need to do macros… so far). 🙂

The exercise involved shooting something, anything, using the lowest aperture setting that your lens has, then somewhere midway, then at the highest setting. Comparing the photos would reveal the change in the bokeh (that blurry look behind the subject that you’ve focused on).

I know that it would’ve been better if I used a lens more adapted to portrait photography (and therefore with a higher range of f/stop values–or aperture size, or quite simply, how wide the lens opens), but I was too lazy to change lenses. I use a Nikkor 18-200mm AF-S lens and love the range it affords me, so actually, I’ve never taken it off to change to another lens since I put it on. 😆

The downside of my laziness to change lenses is this: the lowest aperture setting I could get was a 4.5, and the highest was a 16. I should maybe try with a different lens to get a more dramatic look, but for now, I’m okay with what I got (Geez. Lazy!)

Here’s what I took (the change is most obvious if you look at the sofa and the pillows behind the bikers in each photo)

At f/ 4.5 :

Bikers f/4.5

At f/8 :

Bikers f/8

At f/16:

Bikers at f/16

I would have preferred to shoot outside in daylight, but it’s been raining (strange, for this time of the year), so the skies have been dark and cloudy (not nicely overcast, which would have been more preferable, really). Oh well.

Alrighty then, can you believe playing around has cost me almost all the daylight today? Gotta get working on those freebies for you!

Catch you later! (((((hugs))))))

5 thoughts on “Loading up on fun…

  1. Liv,
    Thank you very much for putting the link to 2Peas Photog. 12 week course on your blog! I have been wanting to take classes but didn’t know where to go…hugs for bringing them to me!


  2. Very interesting reading today! I am amazed at the quality of the cell phone photos! Wow! The restaurant looks fabulous & so does that mall! It really helps to see those photo comparisons with the changes in aperture. TFS those! Maybe I’ll go over & check out that class! Thanks LIV!


  3. Liv, your posts are always filled with things I want to comment on. 🙂

    So when the mag is published, can you hook us up with a linky link, or post the text? I’d love to read it.

    Cell phone cameras are getting better and better. The one in my work phone is quite fabulous, if one is not a photography buff and is content with “snapshots”. Your photos are great. Lovely composition.

    Oooh, I had forgotten about that photography class. I will have to go look at it right now. Thanks for reminding me.


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